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2009 Press Releases
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  bullet Daniels Named 2009 YDLI Distinguished Alumni Leader (December 14)
  bullet Youth Shine in 2009 Holstein Foundation Contests at National Junior Holstein Convention  (July 27)
  bullet Young Dairy Leaders Institute Graduates Sixth Class  (April 3)
  bullet Young Dairy Leaders Institute Quickly Approaching  (February 13)
  bullet Jennissen Named 2008 YDLI Distinguished Alumni Leader  (February 11)
 

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Daniels Named 2009 YDLI Distinguished Alumni Leader

Brattleboro, Vt. (December 14, 2009)...Laura Daniels, Cobb, Wis., has been named the recipient of the 2009 Young Dairy Leaders Institute (YDLI) Distinguished Alumni Leader Award. This award is given annually to a YDLI alumni who has used their YDLI training to have influence and provide leadership for the betterment of the dairy industry. Daniels is the ninth recipient of this award since the YDLI program began in 1994, and was a member of Class 4.

"YDLI was a complete turning point for me. Much of what I speak about today is messages whose origin can be traced to those days with 80 other fully-engaged young dairy professionals," said Daniels. "It wasn't really until YDLI that I realized the absolute importance of not only showing up, but also lending my strong voice to the conversation. I have found a passion to spread my message, which is really 'our' message in agriculture."

Daniels, along with husband Jarred Searls, have owned and operated their dairy, Heartwood Farm, since October 2005. They rotationally graze 280 Jersey cows, as well as raising all young stock on pasture. The farm has a strong commitment to the environment, and because of their conservation efforts, Laura and Jarred received the Conservation Farmer of the Year award from their local Trout Unlimited chapter. Heartwood Farm welcomes numerous non-farm visitors to tour the farm each year to learn more about dairying and agriculture. In addition to farm tours, Daniels strives to educate consumers through their farm's Facebook page and blog, where she shares stories and pictures about life on a dairy farm. She says it has been an excellent way for her to spread the story of how they care for their animals to those who are not able to visit the farm.

Through YDLI, Daniels developed an understanding of the importance of projecting positive messages to consumers. She urges others to do the same and tell the story of why they are involved in the dairy industry.

Daniels is an active member of several agriculture organizations, including the Wisconsin Dairy Business Association, Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation and American Farmers for the Advancement and Conservation of Technology (AFACT). She is a member of the AFACT National Leadership Team and is an Advocate Trainer.

Testifying numerous times at Wisconsin Senate and House Ag Committee hearings, Laura has been politically active regarding legislation about regulations on dairy farms. She was also involved in policy and message development meetings with the Wisconsin Dairy Business Association and Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

Daniels will be formally recognized during the next YDLI class, scheduled for March 2011.

YDLI, a program of the Holstein Foundation, is a leadership and communication skills development program unique to the dairy industry. Three phases take place over a twelve-month period of time to encourage strong retention from the training, as well as personal accountability. Applications will be available soon for Class 7, which will meet between March 2011 and March 2012.

For more information about YDLI, or to receive an application when they are available, visit www.holsteinfoundation.org, or contact Jodi Hoynoski at 800.952.5200, ext. 4261 or click here to email Jodi.

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Youth Shine in 2009 Holstein Foundation Contests at National Junior Holstein Convention

Brattleboro, Vermont (July 27, 2009)...Competition was strong and fun was had by all as the National Dairy Bowl and Dairy Jeopardy contests took place at the National Junior Holstein Convention in Sacramento, Calif., June 27-30. The programs promote dairy industry knowledge and program participation for Junior Holstein members.
Dairy Jeopardy, which is modeled after the popular television game show, tests individuals’ knowledge of Holstein cattle and the dairy industry. The contest is broken down into three age divisions - Junior, ages 9-13, Intermediate, ages 14-17, and Senior, ages 18-21. In this year’s contest, there were 66 participants hailing from New England to California.

In the Junior division, first place honors went to Tony Lopes, Calif., second place was Elizabeth Regusci, Calif., and in third was Elise Regusci, Calif. In the Intermediate division, Kyle Natzke, Wis. took the top spot, second place was Kyle Demmer, Iowa, and third place went to Matt Henkes, Iowa. In the Senior division contest, Emily Lyons, Ill. bested the competition, followed by Elizabeth Cloninger, Pa. taking second place, and Alissa Arata, Calif., placing third.

In the National Dairy Bowl contest, four-person teams compete within two age divisions Junior and Senior. The Junior division, ages 9-15, was comprised of 15 teams this year. The Senior division, ages 16-21, had 17 entries.

In the Junior division, Washington and New York competed in the final match. After the last buzzer, the Washington team coached by Andrew Bishop and Cathy Boisseranc came out victorious and consisted of Kathryn Dunham, Damen Jeg, Abby Lohman, and Shannon Rodeffer. The second place New York team included team members Ryan Smith, Meghan Vaill, Jasmin Wratten, and Wayne Wratten, and was coached by Garrie Smith.

In the Senior division, Iowa returned to the finals match-up to face off against the team from California. Iowa came out as the champions after the scores were tallied, with their team of Jessie Hammerand, Jordan Hanson, Leah Henkes, and Luke Rauen. The team was coached by Heidi de Gier and Marilyn Steffens. The second place California team included Justin Bopp, Rocco Cunningham, Amanda Moretti, and Taylor Pires, under the guidance of coaches Kirsten Areias and Lynn Cunningham.

The top three individual scores on the written seating exam are also recognized. In the Junior division, Carrie Warmka, Calif., took first, Jake Mills, Iowa placed second, and Eric Migliazzo, Calif. placed third. Virginia dominated the Senior division written test with Hayley Potts in first, Chris Potts in second, and Derek Heizer in third.

Sportsmanship awards are given in each division to teams that demonstrate exemplary sportsmanship throughout the contest. The Delaware junior team received this honor in the Junior division, with team members Joseph Anderson, Gregory Hughes, Ryan Vansant, and Dustin Warren, coached by Heather Gregoire. The team from New York, coached by Alicia Lamb, claimed the sportsmanship award in the Senior division. The team included Lydia Shafer, Amanda Smith, Tyler Reynolds, and Zack Welker.

For more information about Dairy Jeopardy or Dairy Bowl, contact Kelli Dunklee at 800.952.5200, ext. 4124, or click here to email Kelli.

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Young Dairy Leaders Institute Graduates Sixth Class

Brattleboro, Vt. (April 3, 2009)… The sixth class of the Young Dairy Leaders Institute (YDLI) completed their training February 25-28, 2009 in Albuquerque, N.M.  Fifty-six young adults from across the United States, Canada, and Mexico participated in the training, which focused on developing leadership, communication, and advocacy skills.

Phase III’s agenda addressed relevant and timely topics through a variety of hands-on workshops. The first day focused on “working in your community,” and featured instruction on how to be an asset as a board member. That afternoon, Joan Horbiak and David Pelzer led an interactive seminar on handling yourself at a town meeting, and answering tough questions from consumers and the media.

The next day covered “taking it home to consumers,” giving the class an opportunity to explore consumer perceptions about the industry. Dr. Wes Jamison began the day with strategies for managing and resolving conflict. The highly anticipated animal rights panel discussion followed, which featured: Mr. Gene Baur, Farm Sanctuary Founder; Dr. James Reynolds, AVMA Animal Welfare Committee Chairman; Dr. Bernie Rollin, Colorado State University; and Dr. Clive Wynne, University of Florida. Dr. Jamison moderated the panel and shared more insight on how consumers view agriculture.

Understanding government and how legislation is formed was the focus of Saturday’s session. The day started with an introduction to the legislative process and lobbying, then jumped right into a mock scenario of the House of Representatives and Senate passing a bill. Each class member was given a role to play and gained hands-on understanding of how a bill becomes a law. The exercise was led by Charlie Garrison, President of The Garrison Group LLC, Chandler Goule, Staff Director for the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry, and Jodi Hoynoski.

Michele Payn-Knoper, YDLI coach, empowered class members to form a plan for how they would continue their advocacy work following YDLI in the closing session. The class came up with a mission statement for themselves “Stay connected, stay visible, and stay active.”

“YDLI empowers its participants to speak up on behalf of the dairy industry and all of the resources that support it,” said Joseta Halbur, class member from Chilton, Wis. “The program gives tools to use with the media, consumers, and governing authorities that pass laws to restrict the traditions and work of the industry.”

To cap-off their YDLI journey, the group ventured out to the world-famous El Pinto Restaurant for a chili cook-off competition and authentic New Mexican dinner.

Phase I was held last February, when the class met for the first time in Albuquerque. Phase II took place over the last year, during which class members completed a series of activities to put what they learned into action and become more connected with influential leaders and media within their communities.

Throughout the Phase III program, participants reported on individual advocacy projects that were part of their Phase II training. Some chose to use technology to target consumers creating videos with positive dairy messages, and posting information on social media sites. Others worked in their communities, speaking to schools and civic organizations to educate and put a face to their product. Other class members targeted fellow producers to empower them to speak up for the industry and become involved.

Class member Katie Agnew, Oconomowoc, Wis., developed an audio-visual presentation aimed toward students that showed various aspects of life on a farm for her Phase II project. The presentation covered everything from how calves are cared for to the milking process, and stressed the nutritional value of milk. Also, as a result of the media introduction letter she wrote, Agnew was given the opportunity to do an interview with a television news station and speak about what the dairy industry is experiencing in these tough economic times.

Jerry Jennissen, Brooten, Minn., was recognized as the 2008 YDLI Distinguished Alumni Leader Award recipient. Jennissen, a member of Class 1, was honored at a lunch during Phase III.

The Holstein Foundation would like to recognize all of the sponsors who have made YDLI possible. Institute Leaders include Agway Foundation, Inc., Allflex USA, Inc., Cargill Animal Nutrition, Cooperative Resources International, Dairy Management Inc., Farm Credit System Foundation, GEA Westfalia Surge, Inc., Hoard’s Dairyman, Holstein Association USA, Inc., Select Sires, Inc. Institute Friends include Accelerated Genetics, AgStar Financial Services, Badgerland Farm Credit Services, Cause Matters Corporation, CHS, COBA/Select Sires, Inc., Dairy MAX, Inc., DairyBusiness Communications, Elanco Animal Health, FCS Financial Services, GreenStone Farm Credit Services, Hilmar Cheese Company, Inc., KeyBank, Land O’Lakes Foundation, Northeast Farm Credit AgEnhancement Program, Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc., Robert L. Cain Memorial Fund, The Center for Dairy Excellence, The Garrison Group, LLC, and Walco International, Inc.

For more information about YDLI or other Holstein Foundation programs, visit www.holsteinfoundation.org or contact Jodi Hoynoski at 800.952.5200, ext. 4261 or click here to email Jodi.


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Young Dairy Leaders Institute Quickly Approaching

Brattleboro, Vt. (February 13, 2009)…Final preparations are being made for Class 6, Phase III of Young Dairy Leaders Institute (YDLI). Over 60 young adults in Class 6 will complete their training February 25-28, 2009 in Albuquerque, N.M. Phase III is geared toward developing class members’ leadership skills.

YDLI, a cornerstone program of the Holstein Foundation, is a three-phase program which takes place over a two year period, and is open to anyone ages 22-45 in the U.S. or other English-speaking countries. This year’s class is composed of participants from 24 different states, Canada and Mexico. The first class of YDLI was held in 1994, and graduates total over 400.

“With the economic conditions, animal rights, consumer perception issues, and other pressures affecting the dairy industry today, it’s more important than ever to have strong leadership and a united voice for our industry,” said Jodi Hoynoski, Holstein Foundation Programs Manager. “Our training is aimed at preparing people to defend and promote the dairy industry to the media, consumers, elected officials, and their communities, ultimately making for a more profitable dairy industry.”

The three-day agenda covers several topics relevant to today’s issues through a variety of interactive workshops. Class members will share reports on their projects completed during Phase II, receive advanced media training, learn conflict resolution techniques, board and meeting skills, and take part in a hands-on exercise about the legislative process. Another exciting addition to Phase III is a panel discussion focused on animal rights issues.

The Holstein Foundation would like to thank the many generous sponsors of YDLI. Institute Leaders include Agway Foundation, Inc., Allflex USA, Inc., Cargill Animal Nutrition, Cooperative Resources International, Dairy Management Inc., the Farm Credit System Foundation, GEA WestfaliaSurge, Inc., Hoard's Dairyman, Holstein Association USA, Inc., and Select Sires, Inc. Institute Friends include Accelerated Genetics, AgStar Financial Services, Badgerland Farm Credit Services, Cause Matters Corporation, CHS, COBA/Select Sires, Inc., Dairy Max, Inc., DairyBusiness Communications, Elanco Animal Health, FCS Financial Services, GreenStone Farm Credit Services, Hilmar Cheese Company, Inc., KeyBank, Land O'Lakes Foundation, Northeast Farm Credit AgEnhancement Program, Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc., Robert L. Cain Memorial Fund, The Center for Dairy Excellence, The Garrison Group LLC, and Walco International, Inc.

For more information about YDLI or other Holstein Foundation programs, contact Jodi Hoynoski at 800.952.5200, ext. 4261 or click here to email Jodi.

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Jennissen Named 2008 YDLI Distinguished Alumni Leader

Brattleboro, Vt. (February 11, 2009)...Jerry Jennissen, Brooten, Minn., has been named the 2008 Young Dairy Leaders Institute (YDLI) Distinguished Alumni Leader award recipient. The award recognizes outstanding YDLI alumni for their leadership and contributions to the dairy industry. Jennissen is a graduate of YDLI Class 1, and is the eighth recipient of this honor since the YDLI program began in 1994.   

“I feel that YDLI was and continues to be an excellent program,” said Jennissen. “One thing in particular that has had an impact on my professional life was learning to work with and utilize people to put them in a position to succeed. The skills that I gained at YDLI have proven useful whether I’m working with a committee or town board, or with the employees on my farm.”

Jennissen and his wife, Linda, own and operate Jer-Lindy Farm, milking 160 Registered Holsteins on the 240-acre farm. They frequently open their farm to the community, giving them an inside look at agriculture. After building an anaerobic digester in 2007, the Jennissens hosted a field day, allowing the general public, as well as other producers, to visit the farm and see the digester in action. They have also welcomed a small dairy expansion tour, school classes, 4-H judging teams, and foreign visitors to their operation.

Jennissen has had numerous opportunities to speak to state legislators and affect dairy policy. As the first chairman of the Sterns County Dairy Advisory Committee, he helped write the county’s feedlot ordinance and testified at the state capital regarding the state feedlot ordinance. He also participates in the Midwest Dairy Association’s “People Behind the Product” program, giving several presentations to increase consumer awareness about the dairy industry. He has spoken to fellow producers at the Minnesota Milk Producers Leadership luncheon about getting involved with their township government. Jennissen helped develop the idea for the Dairy Star, a bi-monthly newspaper, which is now distributed to over 10,000 subscribers across Minnesota, South Dakota, and Iowa.

Jennissen will be recognized during Phase 3 of the current YDLI Class 6, which will finish their training February 25-28, 2009, in Albuquerque, N.M.

The Young Dairy Leaders Institute, a program of the Holstein Foundation, is a nationally recognized three-phase leadership and communication skills development program for young adults (ages 22-45) working in the dairy industry.

For more information about YDLI or other Holstein Foundation programs, visit www.holsteinfoundation.org or contact Jodi Hoynoski at 800.952.5200, ext. 4261 or click here to email Jodi.

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The Holstein Foundation, headquartered in Brattleboro, Vt., is a 501(c)3 organization founded in 1989.
The Foundation's cornerstone program for young adults is the renowned Young Dairy Leaders Institute (YDLI). Current programs targeting youth ages 9-21 include the popular Dairy Bowl and Dairy Jeopardy competitions.
The Holstein Foundation also focuses on youth education and outreach activities, offering free workbooks,
a yearly newsletter, and ribbons for local shows, just to name a few.